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From the Field

Oil prices briefly increased on Wednesday on reports of falling reserves and increased refinery activity, although the market will remain depressed despite the rise through 2016.

Oil wells in crosshairs in Syria

SOCHI, October 11, 2017 – The Syrian regime has threatened Syrian Kurdish forces that provide the backbone of the Western-led anti-Islamic State effort over oil resources in the country’s disputed northeast, international media reported on Wednesday.

 

It would be one of the few examples of crude driving geopolitics in Syria, which, unlike many of its regional neighbours, possesses few hydrocarbons resources.

“They [Kurds] know well that Syria will not allow its sovereignty to be violated under any conditions,” Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Al Moualem said on Wednesday during a visit to Russia, quoted by Reuters. “They are now drunk on U.S. assistance and support. But they need to understand that this assistance won’t last forever.”

Both the Syrian army supported by Russia and Iran and US-allied Kurdish forces have in recent weeks dashed towards the provincial capital of Deir Ezzor, which had been encircled and partially held by Islamic State for years. Prior to the civil war that started in 2011, Deir Ezzor had been dubbed Syria’s oil capital, with wells nearby producing around 27,000 bopd.

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